FLU419 SEE HMMH HME Owners group

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peakbagger

Member
503
7
18
Location
northern nh
Hello - I am considering buying a SEE. Am interested in making New England contacts - I am in CT - near New London. I have about 8 acres - rough terrain, lets of rocks and trees. I'd use it mostly for land clearing projects - side hustle/gig. Not looking to generate any income with it. At the same time, I am expecting that it will take some cash input depending on how much the starting point needs. I am handy and at the same time, don't want to spend an excessive amount of time fixing break downs.

Purpose of my post is to possibly find folks to dialogue with so I can decide whether I want to go this route or a more traditional path - backhoe or tractor.

Thanks
sorry i missed this one. I will give you my standard answer, it depends what you are comparing the see to. The see is not going to compete with a new on the lot digitally controlled tier 4 complaint cat, jd or case. On the other hand the cost for a see is a downpayment for what you would pay for a new one. You are not going to be able to work on a new cat or case as they require specialized diagnostic gear and software that you may or may not even be able to access. A see is extremely well documented and the technology is mostly 1960s, albeit the base chassis is german 1960s and the add on equipment on the rear deck is 1980s case so some translation is required on occasion. When you compare a see to an equivalent vintage cat, jd or case it has similar functionality and its highly likely that for what you are paying for good see with minimal hours you are getting a third hand jd, case or cat with lots of hours that is worn out and going to require constant repair.

the german approach uses a lot of air assist systems to do stuff that may be manual linkage on us product and the germans didnt color code the see electrical harness so it bit more a challenge to chase electrical gremlins.


one big difference to be aware of is a see does not have hydraulic or manual thumb and that does limit the backhoes use for moving rocks around which may limit its use for land clearing. There is thread on add on thumbs but my read is its tough to fit one on that does not interfere with stowing the bucket in preparation to stowing the backhoe. Its apparently a tight fit. I have the somewhat rare optional hien werner rock/ledge bucket and its also a very tight fit. I can imagine how a thumb would fit but haven't looked in detail. Btw, the hein werner optional bucket is great for digging in rock and rotten ledge but not so good at making a clean hole. I rarely see ads listing this bucket on see so expect the folks who don't have it don't realize the difference. The other difference to understand is the loader is not a bulldozer, its a loader. Fine for moving loose dirt and smoothing it out but don't expect to be able to dig into virgin soil. Another thing to be aware of is like a standard backhoe loader you are nor going anywhere quickly. It may have theoretical top road speed of 50 mph but anything over 30 mph is pretty hairy due to a combination of heavy long throw springs, loose sidewall tires and a loader hanging well ahead of the front tires on short wheelbase truck.


one of the forbidden subjects of this forum is talking details on insurance. Before you buy a see you need to do research on if you can title it in your state and use it on the road and if you can get insurance. In many cases getting anything more than liability is difficult if not impossible but do the homework up front. If you are doing side gigs for some one else realize you may be doing the work "naked" and any claims come out of your pocket.


you did mention a key thing, you need to be "handy" as there is no backup beyond various forums, so if you cant fix it there is no one to fix it for you. If you try to pay someone you are basically paying them to gain experience that you should be getting for yourself. You will need to "tool up" and harbor freight will be your friend for the really big metric tools, jack stands and jacks you will need. A fyi on forums, the only see specific forum is this one, there are other unimog forums but sees seem to be regarded as "b*st*rd stepchildren", the folks may try to help but realize that their experience is the 406 chassis or the large sbus so they can not contribute much if you have backhoe issues. Most of the see knowledge on this forum including myself are first time owners of unimogs and we are learning as we go.


now the issue of fixing break downs. Its very dependent on the individual see you buy. If the see hasn't been rebuilt by the government (many have been) you are looking at 30 year old equipment that was stored in very hot sunny conditions that are hard on rubber and resilient seals. They may not be worn out, but can suffer from lack of use. That means tires at $400 to $500 a piece, lots of hydraulic hoses, hydraulic cylinder seals, all the fluids will need to be replaced. The air system usually needs to be taken apart and cleaned out various rubber like flexible bushings also will crop up, like steering linkage boots (that are no longer available) which means potential home brew fixes or buying new steering linkage from europe (not cheap). So that cheap see that hasn't been rebuilt may come with $5k of things you may need to replace all at once or just live with the down time and fix when broke. I tend to go with the fix when broke as i strictly use it for myself. A rebuilt unit depending on
the rebuild date may manes 20 to 25 years newer rubber parts.


you are at disadvantage in new england as most of the sees were down south in depots when finally sold. It costs 3 to 4k for shipping from down south. There were some sees transferred to state or local governments for reuse up in new england but these have to be looked at carefully as they seem to be units that were not rebuilt and may have suffered from lack of maintenance due to untrained mechanics. There is only one "sort of dealer" and that's c&c equipment who have been buying and selling sees over the course of the surplus cycle and even they seem to be getting out of it.
 

Another Ahab

Well-known member
15,912
129
63
Location
Alexandria, VA
sorry i missed this one. I will give you my standard answer, it depends what you are comparing the see to.
Strikes one as an OUTSTANDING summary, peakbagger.

Thank you!

Makes me so glad I do not own a SEE, but additionally glad that others choose willingly to do so.

That way, I got something to entertain me during popcorn moments here at the crib!

:beer:
 

rtrask

Member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
209
17
18
Location
Littleton, Colorado
This is very true. It's a add on. You can take it off. But you all are focused on only the negative side of the STE/ICE system. And let me state here, the STE/ICE was a failure throughout the military. For three reasons. Soldiers could not use it/ and lost any confidence what so ever in it. It was too complicated. And last but not least, the system never got off the ground before the military "ditched it". No effort was made to correct known faults, to expand its uses or to make it simpler to use.

OK. Now to the good points. Those pins in the C-plug all go to places that it might be handy to be able to check, without getting up, and moving around. Or opening something up. If you look at the points that the wires come from, you just might be surprised. I am not a CEE guy. Haven't looked at the wire Schmatices and checked those points out. But I have done so on equipment I do know well. Power generation. And there are more then several nice to be able to check voltages, available at my C1 plug. Now most of you don't work on the CEE everyday of your life. I did army power generation for about 28 years. Using that plug saved me a million miles, and often allowed me to work alone, insted of needing someone to go around on the other side to mesure voltage while I started the gen set. I also could use it to jump around several circuits, when they didn't work normally. So before you rip everything out, might want to look. And if it's not worth your time, then do it.
Thanks Guy, That is the first good reason to keep it in place.The two reasons I want to get rid of it is first the wires are not on the schematic and wind up confusing me while I try to sort it out. Second the after thought way it was added on in my opinion results in wires running along places that could get hot, or exposed to rocks from the road etc. and it just bothers me. The problem I see with using it for multi meter diagnostics is that I have no idea which pin goes to which wires. so I am not sure how it would help me.
 

Sgt Jiggins

Potato Peeler
Steel Soldiers Supporter
202
4
18
Location
Lynchburg, VA
There are other "SEE people" out there on SS who for whatever reason aren't adding to this thread - maybe they're unaware of all the twists and turns it's taken. One of those people has echoed what Guyfang is saying: that they go all over the truck. They also agreed with Guyfang in that they could be/was helpful to them when they worked on SEEs in active service.

I don't really have a strong opinion on it one way or the other, but I think we should probably SEE what these guys can add before completely writing it off...

SJ/JD
 

peakbagger

Member
503
7
18
Location
northern nh
The student handout in the misc technical manual forum has details on the STE/ICE system including what pin goes where. The value of the STE/ICE appears to be that the STE/ICE box had a memory chip with the working range of values of each circuit. I have not seen a list of these values. The shunt on the battery cables is a nice thing to have as if someone were so inclined they could hook meter to it and monitor battery amperage.
 

Pinsandpitons

Member
115
2
18
Location
Central Washington
I cut mine out in a fit of rage last year. Perhaps that was a self inflicted gunshot to the foot, but I loath clutter and poorly installed systems, so for me it simplified the diagnostic procedure. To each his own. I would love to watch someone diagnose an issue using the STE/ICE wires, in theory it would be a great help, but I know not how to use it so it's an albatross. My .02 only.
 

Another Ahab

Well-known member
15,912
129
63
Location
Alexandria, VA
I'd use the clamp-on meter if I wanted to know. Every connection in an electrical system is a potential problem source, so the fewer the better, I think.
I cut mine out in a fit of rage last year. Perhaps that was a self inflicted gunshot to the foot, but I loath clutter and poorly installed systems, so for me it simplified the diagnostic procedure.
Being not too smart, I always avoided and tried to steer clear of electrical issues (where possible).

Like FLU farm says:

- Just SO many places to search for "the" problem!

It'll wear a body out.


dumbfounded.jpg
 

peakbagger

Member
503
7
18
Location
northern nh
I just got off 6 months on and off trying to chase down a no start condition on a 1987 Bronco with fuel injection that had been parked since 2000. I had to do a frame repair so the body had to be removed which probably didn help. I learned far more than I ever wanted to know about diagnosing harness, electrical and fuel injection problems. The SEE even with STE/ICE harness in place is simple compared to that ford. About the only saving grace is Ford color codes their harnesses (but they don't put the little white numbers on the wires near the terminal points). IMHO vehicles being sold off the lot today are going to be scrapped due to obsolete software before they wear out.
 

The FLU farm

Active member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
2,631
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Location
The actual midwest, NM.
Sounds like fun, peakbagger. I hope you rinsed out the fuel system really well.

Without even having to touch anything electrical, except for charging the battery, I'm arguing with a small generator that has been sitting since 2011. This excuse for gasoline we get these days has been keeping me busy lately.
Yesterday I drained the last 100 gallons out of a transfer tank in preparation for filling it with ethanol free 91 octane, which I hope will last a bit longer.

The vehicles running on that 2017 fuel (liberally treated with Sta-Bil) are really starting to show their displeasure. Now I need to figure out what to do with 100 gallons of stale "gas".
 

mberetta

New member
30
0
0
Location
Utah
It's been a while. I haven't had much (any) time for my SEE since March.

She starts and runs... ...on ether.

I've dealt with a kinked fuel line, bad primer, rotten fuel filters, corroded prefilter, cracked brass fittings, only to find that no fuel is getting past the injection pump. Air has been bled out of lines and filters. I didn't find anything about bleeding the injector pump in the manual. Any suggestions?

Sent from my Moto G (5) Plus using Tapatalk
 
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Pinsandpitons

Member
115
2
18
Location
Central Washington
I am curious, what do you mean no fuel is getting past the injection pump? The priming system should take care of injection pump priming, that’s what it’s for. I’m assuming this SEE ran in February and March so we can assume the injection pump worked then. As always, these comments are subject to my ignorance and misunderstandings.
 

mberetta

New member
30
0
0
Location
Utah
I am curious, what do you mean no fuel is getting past the injection pump? The priming system should take care of injection pump priming, that’s what it’s for. I’m assuming this SEE ran in February and March so we can assume the injection pump worked then. As always, these comments are subject to my ignorance and misunderstandings.
No she hasn't run since she arrived from the base. I can crack all the line fittings from the primer pump to the injection pump as well as the bleeder screws and get fuel to run out. If I unscrew any of the lines from the top of the injector pump to the engine they are dry despite lots of cranking and lots of priming. Primer gets very stiff with line pressure.

Sent from my Moto G (5) Plus using Tapatalk
 

Pinsandpitons

Member
115
2
18
Location
Central Washington
Oooooooo.... sounds like the pump needs to come off to me. One last hope would be that the throttle linkage isn’t adjusted properly. Have you worked the linkage at the pump while checking for fuel? Anyone have other ideas?
 
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